Where to drink in Fort Worth now: 5 best bars for a stiff cocktail
Fact: the only ice and salt Texas is familiar with is a margarita. Last week’s winter explosion – with sub-zero temperatures, days of power outages, signs of boiling water, and treacherous roads (all in addition to an ongoing pandemic) – put the stress into torrent mode. We all deserve a stiff drink.
So perfect timing that Tarrant County’s bars were officially cleared to reopen as hospital stays from COVID-19 have fallen. Here are the top five bars to go for a strong cocktail. (Remember: wear your mask, avoid groups, maintain social distance, sit outside whenever you can, and get vaccinated when it is your turn.)
Tulips is believed to be the first medium-sized music venue the city has seen since the Caravan of Dreams. It is also becoming one of the most popular bars in the Fort Worth neighborhood. The spacious building on Near Southside, which can accommodate up to 600 people, opened in November and is located in the space that used to be the Collective Brewing Project at 112 St. Louis Ave. found. Thanks to the pandemic, more intimate acoustic shows have been held so far. But guests don’t need a ticket on most days to partake of cocktails like the Black Manhattan, the mezcal-based ocaso or the caffeinated and bourbon-enriched Panther trap. There is also a Texas Kosher deli menu and a long coffee menu. Note that Tulips opens earlier than most bars – 11 a.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Also good for opening as a heating station and distribution point for free firewood during the cold temperatures last week.
Proper on Magnolia Avenue is known for making some of the smartest libations for the city’s most discerning customers. Shake off the chill of last winter storm with hot buttered guns (a mix of Barbados and Jamaican rum, scotch whiskey liqueur, cinnamon and butter). Irish coffee with pear-flavored cream; or classic hot vortex with whiskey spikes. Or try something adventurous from Proper’s brand new cocktail menu, such as the New York Sour with Old Forester 100 and Pinot Noir. or smoke in the air with rye whiskey and fruitwood smoke. There is also a picturesque terrace that is ideal for those 60-degree days to come.
Nickel City Fort Worth
On the first day temperatures were above freezing after the days of winter hammering in Texas, this South Main Street bar roasted diners with highballs, the first being in the house. With its beloved original Austin location, Nickel City has drawn many visitors since it opened in Fort Worth in October. Vintage alcohol signs, pinball machines, mustard-yellow benches and a centuries-old triple arched pole with carved lion heads are among the visually fascinating highlights. While frozen drinks like Frozen Irish Coffee and Frozen Strawberry Negroni are the most popular, opt for one of the old school whiskey beer kettle makers to keep things safe.
This bar and terrace in the TCU area, which is still a little under the radar, was opened in December on Stanley Ave. 2836 opened quietly. It’s named after a factory chimney that burned down in 1948, and the cocktail lounge was built with its brick. Guests will find several areas to navigate and settle in: the outdoor terrace with picnic tables and open lawn, and two spacious cocktail bars. A permanent food tag called the 817 Pizza serves up thick-crusted rectangular cakes. For the stiff drinks, try the penicillin made from scotch, honey, ginger and lemon. or the spicy Poblano Verde Margarita. Note that this bar closes at 10pm Tuesday through Saturday and at 8pm on Sunday.
Fort Worth’s best skyline view comes from … a Springhill Suites by Marriot? Yes. Tim Love’s rooftop tapas bar Atico is located on this chain hotel location in the Fort Worth Stockyards, which offers expansive panoramic views of the city center and serves as a pre- or post-dinner drink stop. Take an upholstered, high-backed bar stool and make yourself comfortable. It’s easy to sit and stay for a while. Try the signature Aigua de Valencia, which is made from vodka, orange juice and Cointreau and topped with bubbly cava. The bright and cheerful preparation reminds us that there is always reason to celebrate, even when winter is almost over.